“Every journey begins with the first step of articulating the intention, and then becoming the intention.” ― Bryant McGill
Monday morning’s workout consisted of building up to a heavy, single rep Deadlift. Whenever a workout like that is programmed, it is clearly an opportunity to CRUSH your old PR (personal record) and get to write an even larger number up on the white board. Which is exactly what I did, breaking my old Deadlift PR by 60 lbs with a solid 305 lb rep! WOOT WOOT.
That rep at 305 lbs felt great, and I probably could have even thrown on a couple more pounds, so why did I stop there?
Because in all reality, I was not focused on finding out the pure maximum weight I could lift. That didn’t align with my own personal goals. That is the most important lesson I think that anyone engaging in exercise can learn:
Understand how what you are doing today is a part of the plan to build towards the long term goals you have set for yourself.
In my example above of testing for a PR in the Deadlift, the idea behind it was establish a relative max load so that I can use that number to determine sub-maximal training loads that will still get results. For instance, prior to Monday morning I still thought my Deadlift PR was 245 lbs. So when training for reps at 70%, I would only throw on about 170 lbs. However, knowing that a better measure of my Deadlift PR is now 305 lbs, 70% would be closer to 215 lbs! That’s a difference of 45 lbs, which over the course of time and reps adds up quickly and would definitely have an impact on my results.
My purpose for having a decent measurement of my Deadlift PR was to help improve the quality of the rest of my sub-maximal training I do on a regular basis. However if you are a POWERLIFTER and are all about just benching, squatting and deadlifting as much weight as possible, then maybe you need to build up to heavy 1 rep maxes more often!
I’m not often going to find myself in a competition setting where I am willing to round out my back to stand up a few extra pounds, so I stopped short of my form breaking in practice as well. That is something you should be thinking about when you are lifting as well:
- Is this competition?
- What am I willing to compromise on during this lift?
- Or am I training?
- What weight can I work with today that won’t hurt me or compromise my training going forward?
You don’t always have to try to be the strongest person in the gym, you just need to strive to be the best YOU can be while striving to meet the goals you have set. Just some thoughts to keep in mind during your next training session or next time you see a 1 rep max programmed on the white board